Lagos Set To Headcount Public Primary School Pupils, Urges Stakeholders’ Cooperation

Wale Jagun

The Lagos State Government has concluded plans to commence a physical counting exercise of pupils in public primary schools from Monday, 13th to Friday, 24th November 2023.

The exercise will be held in 1,020 government-owned primary schools in the State to validate the number of pupils for the provision of quality and sustainable basic education.

Speaking at the commencement of the One-Day workshop, themed, “Physical Headcount of Public Primary School Pupils”, held recently at the Protea Hotel, Ikeja, Commissioner for Economic Planning and Budget, Mr. Ope George said the survey is desirable to understand the needs and challenges faced in the basic education system to enable education administrators and policymakers make informed decisions and allocate resources efficiently.

George, represented by the Special Adviser on Economic Planning to the Governor, Mr. Lekan Balogun, said the Primary School Headcount is a critical tool for improving the quality and accessibility of primary education.

“The primary school headcount is not merely a statistical exercise, it is a reflection of our commitment to understanding the needs and challenges faced by our educational institutions. This represents a significant milestone in our commitment to providing quality education to the children of Lagos State. It is an occasion that unites us in our collective dedication to ensuring a brighter future for our kids and by extension, our youths”, he said.

The Commissioner further added that the State Government is making several efforts to improve the education sector and would continue to boost the capacity of teachers and students systematically with consistent improvements following the 21st-century realities.

He, therefore, charged stakeholders in the education sector including Education Secretaries, Head-Teachers, Education Consulting Firms, Academia and other experts to forge a strong partnership for smooth and active participation in the exercise towards achieving an enhanced and improved basic education system in the State.

“The State over the years has engaged highly resourceful consulting outfits to continually build the capacity of both staff and students regularly following the dictates of the 21st-century economy as encapsulated under the THEMES Plus Agenda. Let us all pledge to work together to collaborate, and share ideas and solutions for the betterment of our basic education system. Together, we can build a brighter future for our children, ensuring that they have the knowledge and skills to thrive in an ever-changing world”, he averred.

Earlier, the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Economic Planning and Budget, Mr. Ibrahim Obajomo enumerated the significant benefits of the headcount exercise which is to allow for vital provision of resource allocation, policy and planning, infrastructure development, evidence-based decision making, identifying enrollment disparities, monitoring attendance accountability and transparency.

While allaying the fears of stakeholders that all pupils in the public primary schools may not be counted, the Director of Socio-Economic Statistics, Mr. Peter Olowu assured that provisions to enumerate absentees during the exercise had been made to bridge such gaps.

Meanwhile, the State Government through the Lagos Bureau of Statistics (LBS) has employed personnel for the different levels of operation for the survey including 10 Coordinators, Four Evaluators drawn from the Academia, 100 Enumerators, 60 Mobilisers, 20 Monitoring Officers and 20 Education Secretaries from the Local Government Education Authority as Supervisors.

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